Archive of ‘home’ category

going green

My friend Lisa asked me to do a simple guest post on her blog about what our family does to help the earth. It’s part of her Going Green posts on Sundays. Head on over to Lisa’s blog “So Fresh” to read about it.

linen closet

I finally organized our linen closet. I wish I had taken a before picture for you. It wasn’t really that bad, it just had no rhyme or reason to it. Since everything is behind a closed door I chose a bold, graphic canvas bin from Target that I would not  have normally picked out for the rest of the house.  In here I store table linens, cleaning supplies for this bathroom, soap, aprons, a few towels, extra diapers and wipes for potty training, photography backdrops and fabrics and miscellaneous items like hooks, screws, and toilet paper rolls. I’ve linked up with A Bowl Full O Lemons. Follow the link for more organizing tips, tricks and ideas for everything from recipes and cleaning to crafts.

Goodbye Unit D

 

 

We sold our condo today. It’s all said and done. The papers have been signed. Our renter has moved out and the new couple moves in soon. It’s bitter sweet for me. It was the first place Sam and I bought together. When we moved in the carpets were stained, it smelled like a zoo and our inspector said it was the one of the dirtiest houses he had seen in a while. So why on earth did we buy it? We saw passed the stains, smells and dust bunnies monsters. We made all kinds of changes from new carpets, to paint, to new kitchen counters. We filled the condo faster than we ever thought we could and began dreaming of a home that had a yard our kids could run in (not a mossy driveway our kids constantly slipped on.) Our dream came true a year ago when we bought the house we are in now. I turned in the keys to the condo and never wanted to look back. My dream was waiting for me. But, I had to go back a few months later to check on the place. I was flooded with emotions that I hadn’t expected. We brought home our two children to the condo, Soren learned to walk and talk there, we housed dozens of guests, hosted parties and game nights, celebrated birthdays, mourned losses, had the worst of neighbors and the best of neighbors, and we pretended the noise of the highway was just the sound of the waves of the ocean.  Sam and I (ok, mostly Sam) put his blood and sweat into fixing up that dumpy old condo. We had made it our own. I felt guilty for having wanted to move out so badly. I felt like I had turned my back on all of the memories we made. I was mad at myself that I hadn’t enjoyed each second in that condo but rather wished it away until we got our dream. I learned a big lesson that day. Don’t wish away what I have for something that I don’t. I can just hear my dad’s voice in my head. He has always told me “Don’t wish away your life Linnea.” Parents, they’re always right.

I wish I had better pictures to show you, but here is what I have.

My mother-in-law and I ripping out the carpet

Kitchen: mid floor install and then a few years later with new counters.

Extra Room: mid carpet install and then later as Eva's room

 

junk drawers

When we lived in our condo I was so proud that we didn’t have the typical junk drawer. We didn’t have much space to store anything really. I can’t say the same for our house now.  We have much more space now, especially in our kitchen. Two of those drawers became junk drawers. It’s been embarrassing for me when someone goes to look for a fork and they practically get assaulted with junk when they open one of the two drawers. I was ready to get these drawers organized a few months ago and found these great dividers at Target. They are each their own divider yet they hook together when you find a good set up that works for you. I found that I threw away little because we actually use most of what was in there; batteries, tools, wipes, rubberbands, pictures, jewelry, change, hair clips, chalk, glue, etc… Go clean out a junk drawer. It doesn’t take that long, you’ll be glad you did and you might be surprised as to what you find.

Before and After

Before and After

Laundry

 

I admit it. I have too many clothes. Shocker, I know. I need to do something about this. Not that it is any excuse, but here are some reasons behind my hoarding of clothes and their piles.

*I have 4 different sets of clothing sizes. If you’ve been pregnant you understand:

  • There is the pre-maternity wardrobe (which you hold on to because your false sense of reality allows you to believe that you will one day fit into them again.)
  • The maternity clothes.
  • The post-maternity clothes.
  • The I’m facing reality and I don’t think I’ll lose anymore weight clothes.

*We had a terrible washer and dryer at our last home. I had to wash and dry a lot of things twice and then got behind on the clothes mentioned above and never recovered.

*I didn’t have a good laundry system set in place.

*I have two kids who go through multiple outfits a day and keeping up with their laundry takes precedence.

Part of the break I am taking from photography is to allow myself to get caught up on projects around the house. Labeling the kitchen, organizing the pantry, organizing the linen closet, painting, organizing the junk drawers, filing miscellaneous papers, etc…you get the idea. This weeks project: The Laundry!

I can do the laundry, I don’t mind it. I can do 10 loads in a day. My problem, getting it put away. I get so distracted throughout the day that I end up with a big pile of clean clothes. If its late at night and I walk into my room ready to fall into bed and see a heap of clothes that need to be folded, I swipe it on to the floor and promise myself it will get done tomorrow. My girlfriends and I addressed this issue  (yes, other people do this too.) We laughed about the 4 piles we all have :

  • The dirty pile.
  • The clean pile that needs to be folded and put away.
  • The I wore it once and can wear it again so it doesn’t need to be cleaned just yet pile.
  • The question mark pile: Is that clean or dirty? Eh! I’ll just rewash it.

All that to say, desperate times call for desperate measures. I need a system. A good system. I didn’t even look on Pinterest for this one. I had to stop and think, what would work for me ?

Here is what I found to works best for me.

  1. I keep one laundry basket in the hallway outside of the laundry room. Throughout the day things that get dirty get tossed in there.
  2. I don’t do laundry unless I know I will be around when the dryer timer goes off and can fold it right away.
  3. Each person in our house has a canvas bin on the folding counter in the laundry room.
  4. There are two bins for dish towels and small bathroom towels.
  5. One little bin for solo socks and one for random items out of pockets.
  6. When the dryer is done I stand at the dryer and fold, putting each article of clothing/item in the appropriate bin.
  7. Once that is done then I can start a new load of laundry.
  8. Even if I don’t have time to put it all away right away, at least it is folded, ready to go and not piled on my bed waiting to get swept onto the floor
Sam left me this little note a few years ago. I taped it up in our old laundry room and in this house I wanted it to be framed.

 

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